Abu Dhabi Launches COVID-19 Vaccination Drive for Yas Island Hotel Staff to Enhance Safety for Visitors

Hundreds of Yas Island hotel employees chose to vaccinate

Abu Dhabi, UAE – January: Hundreds of hospitality employees working in Yas Island hotels have chosen to vaccinate as part of Abu Dhabi’s efforts to ensure a safe reopening to tourists and a safe hosting of the recent UFC Fight Island Triple Header event. 

More than 240 people working inside the UFC Fight Island ‘bubble’ hotels on Yas Island received their first dose of the vaccine, via an initiative to provide free vaccines to all hotel staff who choose to vaccinate. The initiative was launched in line with Abu Dhabi’s coordinated and collaborative response to COVID-19, the emirate-wide ‘Choose to Vaccinate’ campaign and the nationwide immunisation programme.

The vaccination drive for hotels on Yas Island, the region’s premier leisure and entertainment hub, will add an extra level of safety for visitors wanting to experience Abu Dhabi’s rich and diverse mix of cultural, leisure and entertainment attractions. The drive also complements the protocols already in place across the emirate, including the ‘Go Safe’ certification initiative, which enforces global health and safety practices across the emirate’s hotels, malls, attractions and public places, which was led by the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi).

“Abu Dhabi has shown its commitment to the highest standards of health and safety and ability to host large-scale international events during a pandemic with the previous two editions of UFC Fight Island in recent months,” said HE Ali Hassan Al Shaiba, Executive Director of Tourism and Marketing at DCT Abu Dhabi. “The safe and successful return of fans to live events at UFC Fight Island Triple Header showcased the hard work and collaboration of government departments, public and private sectors and UFC to make it possible.

“Abu Dhabi is open; Abu Dhabi is safe. This vaccination drive for hospitality staff, who are the face of Abu Dhabi and work tirelessly to uphold the emirate’s standing as a world-class leisure destination, will help reassure visitors that they are in a safe and secure environment and reaffirm our efforts to press forward with our tourism plans, guided by the country’s visionary leaders.” 

Fahad Al Mahmoud, Executive Director Stakeholder Management at Aldar, who was one of the 240 to receive the vaccine, said: “Our leadership’s tireless efforts and rigorous approach to managing the COVID-19 pandemic have enabled us to remain resilient throughout. The tourism sector is a vital pillar of our economy and this vaccination drive will ensure we continue to play our part in supporting the hospitality industry’s reopening in a responsible and safe way. We truly hope everyone will choose to vaccinate to protect their health and the health achievements of our nation, and to accelerate our ability to host flagship events across the emirate safely.”

In December, DCT Abu Dhabi announced the reopening of the emirate to tourism, as well as a gradual return to event hosting, with strict guidelines in place that ensure the safety of the wider community. 

UFC Fight Island Triple Header hosted UFC athletes, coaches, UFC staff and event personnel in ‘bubble’ hotels on Yas Island for the duration of the event, following a 48-hour quarantine period. PCR testing were also conducted every 72 hours.

Spectators attending the event were in their own ‘bubble’ and adhered to health and safety protocols, including presenting a negative PCR test on arrival, ticket checks, thermal scanning, mandatory wearing of masks and social distancing.

The spectator ‘journey’ was created to ensure a world-class, safe experience, and included the option of ordering food and beverages to spectators’ seats inside the arena to minimise movement.

UFC Fight Island Triple Header began with UFC FIGHT NIGHT: HOLLOWAY vs. KATTAR on January 16th, followed by UFC FIGHT NIGHT: CHIESA vs. MAGNY on January 20th. UFC 257 Poirier vs. McGregor brought the curtain down on a week of rousing action and thrilling entertainment at Etihad with Poirier’s TKO win against McGregor.

The series was held at Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi’s latest world-class entertainment venue and the new international home of UFC. UFC Fight Island Triple Header marked the world’s first UFC event to welcome fans since the beginning of the pandemic.


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About the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi

The Department of Culture and Tourism conserves and promotes the heritage and culture of Abu Dhabi emirate and leverages them in the development of a world-class, sustainable destination of distinction, which enriches the lives of visitors and residents alike. The organisation manages the emirate’s tourism sector and markets the destination internationally through a wide range of activities aimed at attracting visitors and investment. Its policies, plans and programmes relate to the preservation of heritage and culture, including protecting archaeological and historical sites and to developing museums, including Zayed National Museum, Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, and Louvre Abu Dhabi. DCT Abu Dhabi also supports intellectual and artistic activities and cultural events to nurture a rich cultural environment and honour the emirate’s heritage. A key role is to create synergy in the destination’s development through close co-ordination with its wide-ranging stakeholder base.

About UFC:

UFC® is the world’s premier mixed martial arts (MMA) organization, with more than 318 million fans and 102 million social media followers. The organization produces more than 40 live events annually in some of the most prestigious arenas around the world, while broadcasting to nearly one billion TV households across more than 175 countries. UFC’s athlete roster features the world’s best MMA athletes, representing more than 65 countries. The organization’s digital offerings include UFC FIGHT PASS®, the world’s leading streaming service for combat sports. UFC was acquired in 2016 by global entertainment, sports and content company Endeavor and strategic investors Silver Lake Partners and KKR. UFC is headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada. For more information, visit UFC.com and follow UFC at Facebook.com/UFC, Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram: @UFC.

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